Scientists have managed to reconstruct the beautiful ceiling in the seaside palace in Herculaneum, restoring the original colour of the ceiling. They succeeded thanks to preserved pieces of wood.
The building known as the House of Telephus is a large villa that was supposed to belong to Marcus Nonius Balbus – the Roman governor of Crete.
According to Professor Andrew Wallace-Hadrill, director of the Herculaneum Preservation Project, work on the reconstruction of the roof and ceiling of the building began in 2008. It was a very tedious and thorough process, thanks to which it was possible to find out how the ceiling in the dining room was painted. The height of the room was 9 meters, and the floor was additionally lined with marble. What’s more, the room had a beautiful view of the Gulf of Naples.
Scientists used original pieces of wood with traces of paint to rebuild the ceiling. Then, using a 3D scanner, it was possible to reconstruct the fictitious appearance of the vault and colour it.
At the moment, scientists have managed to reconstruct only 1/3 of the ceiling. Moreover, half of the house is under 13 meters of volcanic rock, which prevents the building from being fully excavated.